Saturday, October 17, 2009

Shiur! + Jam-Packed Shabbos

So this week has been hilarious. It has ranged from having a distinguished Parisian elderly gentleman who now lives in England have the following conversation with me:

He: Where did you study?
Me: Yeshiva University.
He: Where is your scarf?
Me: Oh, I'm not married yet.
He: Scarves are only for married women?
Me: (insert entire conversation about headcoverings and Judaism)

to having a lady mistake me for a Bais Yaakov girl. She inquired as to whether I knew an apartment where none of the girls watched television because there was a girl who wanted to move to such an apartment. I said I'd keep an eye out and almost died laughing later (not about the request, but about the fact that she mistook me for a Bais Yaakov girl. Clearly I am adele in disguise). And that's to say nothing of the fact that I had such a party during Shabbat. Firstly, the Glueck Center is beautiful and there's nothing I like better than the Main Beis davening. Secondly, I was invited to CS Louis for a meal! And our conversations rocked. Plus, there was the whole debacle of too much baking powder in the cake I made, which equalled hilarity c.f. Anne of Green Gables and the liniment scene. Then there was getting to go to Daughter of God and The Man With the Colored Coat for a meal (and they had hung up my painting!) Plus I visited The Golden-Haired Girl.

And best of all...

Seventeen people plus Menachem Butler came to my shiur! Happy Chana. (And, if I may take pride, Menachem Butler liked it. Huzzah.) Plus some lady I don't know asked me if I was a dancer. Because I dance and am very theatrical when I speak.

Here's what I was thinking re: the shiur. I could type it up. But why do that? It'll take forever and no one will read it. Thus, why not just take over the SkyCaf and/or some other forum one night this week and give the same shiur to everyone who couldn't come i.e. the men? Then it shall be worth everyone's while. Let me know if you a) want to come and b) have a suggestion for a forum. I'll be in Queens this weekend; maybe I can just give the shiur in Queens.


tnspr569 said...

Some of us would very much like to hear this shiur - perhaps someone could record audio/video if you give it during the week?

George Eliot said...

>I'm giving a shiur for women this Shabbat at Mt. Sinai after Mincha (which is at 5:35).

>Seventeen people plus Menachem Butler came to my shiur!

Is Menachem Butler a woman or did he come in drag?

Tzvi Feifel said...

i didnt know i was allowed to sneak in!?!?!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1:45. Regarding your 'forget' blog. Your description in the second to last paragraph is uncanny. It describes, exactly, my own feelings for a # of years regarding my father. I don't know what this person did to make you feel this way so I don't know if the two cases are situationaly comparable. But the feelings and thoughts you describe are exactly the same. Walking; being afraid you'll see the person; when someone looks or sounds like them, the associated feeling process. Uncanny. First, you should not feel bad or powerless that you cannot control these feelings. You should understand that this is a natural process. When a person undergoes a severe enough trauma (acute or over time) the brain hardwires the bad feelings to be felt at any instance of percieved proximity to that trauma, so asto protect the individual from harm. So first of all, you shouldn't be angry with yourself nor feel frustrated since this is a hardwired response (soldiers experience it all the time). Let me say that broken wings do mend in time, and eventually the emotional impact of memories past will at least lessen if not fade entirely. However, if that is of little comfort then from someone who has been through exactly the same feelings, here is some practical advice. You mention that you try to 'block' the memories. It is self evident that if you try to mentally "block" it then you are actually focusing your mind on it even more. When you struggle to block something in that manner you are actually just expending emotional energy since that attempt to block is just focusing the mind on the thing you don't wish to focus. Instead, acknowledge the memory, say "ok" and then think of a different topic. A topic that interests you. Distracted by a new thought, the bad memory will fall by the wayside. Another idea; a thought experiment if you will. When you have a quiet mind, imagine yourself standing next to this person ( you can imagine being in public or witha friend if need be). Now, what is the worst this person can do today? Can the person cause you physical injury? Can the person hurt your financial future? Can the person, ina ll honesty actually do anything "real to you today? In the thought experiment, you don't have to say anything to the person. You don't owe them the time of day. You can say whatever you want, or you don't have to say anything. This person is irrelevant, now, in 10 years, in 30 years, in 100 years. Now, the next time you walk around the city imagine that at the next corner you will meet them. Walk confidently and assuredly. After all, what the hell can they actually do. If they were to say something, you don't owe any response. You are not defined by them. They can be regardeed by you as a crazy person babling away on a street corner. You'd probably ignore such a person. You have no need to debate this persons insanity with them. Or, as a barking dog. You certainly wouldn't feel the need to bark back at the dog. And know that Hashem is with you, right by your side; you needn't fear a thing. Whatever God wants will happen. You don't need to dwell on such adestructive reppetitive circular thought process (fear you will see the person leading to fear of how fearful an experience it will be, All the while repeatedly replaying in your head and heart the thing that you don't want, and so, experiencing over and over in your mind those feelings which your brain is trying to avoid experiencing one time. If you want to know what it might actually be like to meet the person again (and i'm speaking from the specific experience here too). Well it would be pretty much exactly like one of your elaborate memory/emotive experiences, only it would happen once, not over and overand you would actually afterward then see and know how this person actually doesn't have any power over you or your feelings and is completely irrelevant to you or your life or your future. Sorry for the length. I have tried to flesh out my thoughts as succinctly as I could without eliminating the message. Lastly, - Ending continued above due to length.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1:45 continued -Lastly, here is something perhaps to consider. Dietary effects can impact such experiences as you describe. For example Caffeine ( Coffee or Colas) can impact anxiety levels. If you are drinking Coffee or Colas try switching to Green Tea or decaffeinated Green Tea if you can and see if that makes a diff after a few weeks ( though initially you may go through Caffeine withdrawal for a few days to a week i.e headaches lethargy both mental and physical. Another point, and this might be the pot calling the kettle black, as my first comment to your blog was at 1:45 am but I see that alot of your comments are made quite late. Sleep, or the lack of it, or lack of it at the proper time can inhibit the ability to control emotion or can increase anxiety during daytime. Try sleeping at 10 or 11. Last point on possible dietary and nutritional causes or contributing factors. Have your Iron and vitamin D levels checked (you'll have to specifically ask the Doctor to have the lab check your Vit D levels as this is not usually checked in a blood test). If defficient then supplement appropriately, with the Doctors' okay. Also eating fish more often can emmiliorate stress. If you want an MD who is also expert in nutrition see I hope this has been of some help. Your blog on 'the Adept' lecture certainly helped me a great deal. So hopefully this is returning the favor, as I don't like to be in debt lol. If this hasn't been helpful then just remeber briken wings mend in time. You are wonderful. Your future will be wonderful. And there is no need for you to think ill of yourself or unhappily about yourself or the futur. Or even the past no matter what.

Dana said...

first of all: wow to mr. or ms. anonymous. that was a tremendous amount of helpful information, and you're very sweet to type it out for the benefit of all.
to chana: i wish i could have made your shiur! i would love to hear it, or about it, or any drop of what it might have alluded to :)
and kol hakavod for the male who went :)

Anonymous said...

I second Dana! Great that this guy Menachem showed up to your shiur and appreciated it.

rashi said...

you were awesome. i loved your chaburah and the way you combined different ideas!

Daughter of G-d said...

Sounds like the shiur was a big hit!! I'm sorry that you didn't end up giving us a preview at lunch, we were actually really looking forward to it (especially after getting the source sheet from you).

oh well.... next time we'll make sure you do :)

And of course, thanks again for the (YUMMY) desserts :)

Shades of Grey said...

glad to hear the shiur went well. But one point - you like the main beis more than the Carlebach Minyan? ;)

Chana said...

Anonymous 1:45,

Whoever you are, you are FANTASTIC. Thanks so, so much.

Shimon said...

Repeating the request to record the shiur. Promise that (be"h) I will listen all the way through.